4 easy exercises for correct posture
If there’s one thing we can all be guilty of, it’s slouching at the office or even at home. Whether it’s looking down at your phone, slouching back in your desk chair or even sitting in awkward positions for prolonged periods of time, almost all of us have been there. However, we never notice until it’s too late and the pain is already noticeable. We believe that being proactive and utilising the techniques below on a regular basis, you can help yourself to enjoying better posture and far less back and neck pain.
Bad posture isn’t something that you fix overnight, however with regular use of exercise and stretching you can drastically reduce symptoms such as a sore neck, tension headaches and a tight upper and lower back. The following exercises and stretches are suitable for home use and no equipment is required.
Chin tucks for neck posture
Possibly the most unflattering exercise we will talk about today, chin tucks.
How to complete:
- Sit up straight and look directly ahead
- Tuck your chin as tightly as you can to your neck
- Hold for 5 seconds and then release
- Repeat this 10 times or however many you are capable of
This exercise is great for stretching those deep neck flexor muscles which will in turn help stabilise your neck position throughout the day. To progress this exercise, try holding your hand under your chin and applying a downwards pressure with your chin into your hand to create more tension.
As the name suggests all you require for this exercise is a wall to stand against.
How to complete:
- Stand with your back to the wall and bring your arms up as if you were doing an overhead press
- Slowly perform an overhead press, ensuring that your heels, butt, shoulders, head and arms stay as flat against the wall as they can
- Perform 8-10 of these per set, for 3 sets
This exercise is all about points of contact, so it’s important to maintain connection to the wall to ensure a full stretch and proper tension is achieved. Doing this will strengthen your upper/ mid traps which are typically quite weak in the general population, thus improving posture.
Supine spinal twist for lumbar posture
This stretch is one for all of you who struggle with lower back tightness or pain when seated. This stretch is designed to achieve a deep stretch and encourage mobility.
How to complete:
- Lay on your back on the floor
- Bring your arms out directly to the side
- Bring your right knee up and using your hips, point your knee across the left side of your body and hold for 10 seconds. You should feel a stretch in your lower back and glutes when done correctly
- Repeat 3 times on each leg
This stretch will be most effective if completed before you sit down at your desk for the day, or possibly even during a break throughout the day. Do not be discouraged if you feel more of a stretch in your glutes, as they are part of the posterior chain and stretching them may be taking pressure off the lower back as they can often compensate for each other
The Superman for spine posture
As the title suggests this exercise may be more suitable for our more physically capable readers. This one may require a soft matt or carpet floors.
How to Complete:
- Lay down facing the floor
- Stretch your arms out in front of you
- Lift your legs and arms off the floor as far as possible
- Aim to lift your belly button off the floor and imagine you are “flying like superman”
- Hold for 3-5 seconds and repeat 8-10 times
Regular repetition of this exercise will strengthen the core, lower back most prominently but also achieves activation of a large number of muscle groups that work together to achieve this exercise.